The government launched a large-scale campaign to clamp down on all forms of dissent by repressing the rights to freedom of expression and association of human rights defenders and government critics. This campaign was marked by travel bans; the arrest, interrogation and arbitrary detention of human rights defenders; the dissolution of the opposition group Waad and the closure of the newspaper al-Wasat; as well as the continued imprisonment of opposition leaders. Scores of people were sentenced to long prison terms after unfair trials. Authorities stripped at least 150 people of their Bahraini nationality, rendering the majority stateless. Mass protests were met with excessive force, resulting in the deaths of five men and one child and the injury of hundreds. Executions resumed after a hiatus of nearly seven years.
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